That, in itself, isn’t exactly headline news. Over the last decade, you can hardly open a magazine or turn on a television without hearing someone waxing enthusiastic about this strange, beer-soaked and bridge-covered Oregon river town.
But no matter how many New York Times travel pieces you’ve read, or how many episodes of Portlandia you’ve seen, the only way to really know Portland is to experience it for yourself.
As anyone who’s lived here for any length of time will tell you, the city has changed. The buildings have grown taller, the highways more congested. Not only are there more people, but there’s more to do than ever before. It can be overwhelming, even for residents.
That’s where Willamette Week comes in.
For over 40 years, we’ve been curating the Portland experience for Portlanders, helping them navigate the city’s rapidly shifting cultural landscape on a weekly basis. Now, we’re here to do the same for curious Vancouverites.
In the following pages, you’ll find a roadmap to getting the most out of your visit, written by people who know this place better than anyone. We’ve rounded up the best restaurants, the best bars and the best shops. We’ve given you a primer to recreational cannabis—where to get it, how to consume it and where to go with it. We’ve let you know where to stay. And we’ve told you where to find some of that signature Portland weirdness.
Of course, as with all travel guides, this is only meant as a starting point. Our hope is that you’ll begin with our recommendations, then go out and get lost. Because when you do, you’ll find that Portland still has plenty of secrets left to discover. — Matthew Singer, WW Arts & Culture Editor